The Second Edition of the National Para-Sports Festival (National Para Games), which is slated to take place in Abuja from December 8–16, 2023, will be successfully hosted, according to the Honorable Minister of Sports Development, Senator John Owan Enoh.
The Minister revealed this information today in his office at the Moshood Abiola National Stadium in Abuja. He said that the Second Edition of the Para-Sports Games aims to provide a sense of inclusion and an opportunity for people with disabilities (PLWD) to participate in sports and realize their full potential.
Senator Owan Enoh added, “The primary goal of the Games is to identify Para Athletes who could represent the nation in international competitions and to foster a spirit of sportsmanship and camaraderie among Para Athletes in order to enhance and strengthen national unity, peace, and stability in the nation.”
The Federal Government’s commitment to ensuring that sports meet the diverse needs of our nation’s youth is evidenced by the Federal Ministry of Sports Development, which was established by the Bola Ahmed Tinubu-led administration to propel the industry, according to Senator Owan Enoh.
He continued by saying that the athletes’ outstanding results at several national and international events over the years served as the foundation for the Ministry’s decision to organize and host the National Para-Sports Festival.
With this breakthrough, he stated, it is anticipated that attention will be directed on other Para Sports that have not had the chance to showcase their abilities, much less take part in significant local or worldwide athletic events.
The Minister, who is a fervent supporter of para-sports, clarified why it is now essential to establish a specialized platform in order to plan, direct, and oversee the growth of para-sports in Nigeria.
According to the Minister’s deliverables on eight government priority areas, which the Federal Ministry of Sports Development was committed to fully implementing in order to give our teeming youth jobs, this will enable the use of sports as a veritable tool for accelerated social integration and inclusion of people living with disabilities, avail them opportunity and reduce poverty among them in order to maintain national peace and stability.
Senator Owan Enoh went on to say that the Ministry is adamant that para-athletes will benefit from a new chapter in their lives and a means of subsistence, but they will also contribute to our GDP and increase Nigeria’s chances of winning more medals at international competitions and games if given the proper support and resources.
He revealed that more than three thousand (3000) athletes are anticipated to compete this year from thirty-six states in the Federation, including the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
As a result, the Minister urged businesses, well-meaning Nigerians, and pertinent parties to assist government initiatives. and make investments in Para Sports Athletes, emphasizing that the Ministry is still dedicated to creating fresh chances for the growth of Para-Sports in Nigeria.
The Para Powerlifting, Wheelchair Tennis, Para Badminton, Wheelchair Basketball, Para Athletics, Para Soccer, Para Canoe, Para Swimming, Para Shooting, Para Table Tennis, Sitting Volleyball, Amputee Football, Para Taekwondo, and Para Karate are among the sports that will be featured in the Second Edition of the Games.